Held annually each April 22, Earth Day was created to raise awareness and spread gratitude for our planet and all it has to offer. Considered the “most popular secular holiday in the world,” communities around the globe have held Earth Day celebrations and events since its inception in 1970.
This year, college students at schools both large and small have planned and prepared Earth Day events for fellow students, faculty and staff, as well as for the surrounding community. Some campus functions are elaborate while others are simple, but the goal of these college Earth Day 2011 events is the same: teaching others the importance of respecting and caring for the earth.
The following ten colleges and universities across the United States are celebrating Earth Day and Earth Week with their own unique events. Read on to learn more, and feel free to let us know about your school’s Earth Day activities!
The Coalition for Animal Advocacy at Colorado State University is sponsoring VegFest on Earth Day, April 22, 2011. In addition to a free vegan food sampling, to which guests are encouraged to bring their own containers and utensils to cut down on waste, a panel of speakers will be discussing the healthy benefits associated with adopting a plant-based diet and its benefits to the environment.
Located on the outskirts of Nashville, Maryville College students, faculty and staff are welcoming the general public onto their campus to observe Earth Week 2011. The college’s variety of activities includes an electric car display, sustainable art exhibition and Earth Week eco-themed food choices in the dining halls. Lectures, presentations and litter pick-ups are also taking place.
According to Toledo on the Move, Owens Community College distributed 1,000 Colorado Spruce Trees on Thursday April 21, 2011 to honor Earth Day, Community College Month, and Arbor Day. Each tree came complete with planting and care instructions.
Penn State’s University Park campus (the system’s largest) is celebrating Earth Day all day on April 22, 2011. University President Graham Spencer will kick off the university’s biggest Earth Day celebration yet. Over 40 different Penn State green initiatives will be represented in an open networking forum and 12 finalists of the university’s “Sustainable State” video contest will be screened publicly for the first time. Other Penn State Earth Day activities include a “bring your own T-shirt tie-dye” event and a clothing and book exchange, as well as live music from various bands.
Sewanee: The University of the South is also holding a week-long Earth Day celebration. Scheduled events include a show and tell at the student community garden, documentary screenings, tree planting events, lectures, concerts demonstrations and giveaways.
The University of Georgia’s 41st annual Earth Day celebrations include a week packed with activities: Monday was Conservation Day, Tuesday was Consumption Day, Wednesday was Healthy Action Day and Thursday was Energy Day. On Friday, April 22 the school’s week-long celebration culminates with the 2011 Sustainable UGA Earth Day Lecture presented by Justin Gillis, UGA alumnus and The New York Times reporter.
University of Maryland, Baltimore Earth Week events include a recycle box decoration and distribution, electronics recycling, FREE store and plant sale, panel discussions led by professors, the first UMBC farmer’s market and an organic T-shirt sale.
The Valencia Community College campuses have scheduled Earth Day activities throughout the entire week. Yoga sessions, concerts, a bird and plant house sale, a farmer’s market, T-shirt giveaways and salad / wrap bars are among the most popular “green” events.
The Wake Forest University Office of Sustainability explains that the Piedmont Earth Fair Day promotes “environmental stewardship through practical life applications.” The “planet party” will feature over 100 exhibits, children’s programs and entertainment, demonstrations, live music, paper document shredding and Goodwill donations pick-ups.
Earth Week 2011 at Williams College focuses on campus sustainability. Free Williams College Earth Day events, which are are open to the public, include a Kickoff Concert with a performance by the band Aphrodesia, a multi-faith service, an energy fair, lectures and a visit from the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) bus, which runs on recycled vegetable oil and has traveled 40,000 miles around the country.
For information about the above-mentioned colleges and universities—or any other school!—take advantage of the StateUniversity.com U.S. University Directory and our Top 2000 College and University Rankings.
Melissa Rhone earned her Bachelor of Music in Education from the University of Tampa. She resides in the Tampa Bay area and enjoys writing about college, pop culture, and epilepsy awareness.
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